Olives can be pickled green or black. A black olive is simply a ripe olive. Generally, the green olives are used for pickling. When some of the olives begin to change to black, it will be fairly safe to pick the green olives for pickling.
How To Pick The Olives

Place cloth sheets on the ground and strip the fruit from the tree with your hands or with a rake. Collect the fruit from the sheet; remove all stems and leaves and rinse olives in clean water.
PROCESS:
Pickling the olives

Extra virgin olive oil

Put immediately into a bucket of clean water in which ½ cup of cooking salt has been dissolved into every 10 cups of water. A clean plate can be placed on top of the olives to keep them submerged. All olives must be under the liquid. Pour the liquid away daily and replace with fresh salt water. (this may possibly be stretched to every second day). Repeat this washing process for about 20 days for green olives and about 14 days for black olives. The best test is to bite the olive. When bitterness has nearly gone the olives are ready for final salting. Pour off and measure the last lot of water so that you will know the volume of salt brine that will be required. Measure the quantity of fresh warm water into a pan and dissolve the salt, this time the rate of 1cup of salt to 10 cups of water. Bring the salt water preserving the mixture to the boil and allow to cool. Place olives in bottles and then pour the salt-water brine over them until the fruit is completely submerged. Top up bottles with 1 cm of olive oil to stop air getting to the fruit and seal the lids. No further preparation is required and the bottled olives with store for up to at least 12 months in a cool cupboard.

The olives are ready to eat straight from the brine mixture. For extra flavor, take out the olives as required and put them in a clean jar. Add any of the following: garlic, basil, oregano, thyme or chili and pour over the olive oil. Top as needed with olives from the brine mixture. This oil keeps well for up to a year.

Sit back and enjoy the unique flavor or your own pickled olives. You will probably never want to buy chemically enhanced commercial olives again.How To Pick The Olives

Place cloth sheets on the ground and strip the fruit from the tree with your hands or with a rake. Collect the fruit from the sheet; remove all stems and leaves and rinse olives in clean water.
PROCESS:
Pickling the olives

Tips for great olive pickling results

  • the best way to harvest the olives is by hand to avoid damaging the olive
  • do not gather olives from the ground as bruised olives have an off flavor
  • undertake all operations under clean and hygienic conditions
  • do not process olives of different varieties and different ripeness levels in the same container
  • use potable water for all steps. If rainwater is used it should be sanitized
  • use food grade ingredients – salt, herbs and spices
  • keep the airspace above the olives and brine to a minimum to prevent growth of oxygen requiring surface moulds
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Processing:

  • Once the olives are harvested, remove leaves, debris and defective olives
  • Wash the olives with cold potable water
  • At this stage olives can be slit or bruised to speed up the processing (to do this gently hit olives with a wooden mallet to ‘crack’ the olive)
  • Olives are now ready for processing
  • Process olives between 15-30 degrees Celsius – ideally 25 degrees Celsius
  • Use containers that can be sealed tightly to exclude air

  • Storage:
    As a pickled product, olives do not need to be stored under refrigeration although many of us find it convenient to do so

Don’t serve olives straight from the fridge, they are much tastier at room temperature